SAN FRANCISCO -- Josmil Pinto isn't Samuel Deduno's personal catcher. He's Deduno's receptor de privado.
Yes, the ability to communicate in Spanish makes things easier for both players, which helps make Ron Gardenhire's decision about when to rest regular catcher Kurt Suzuki a little easier. Pinto will be behind the plate tonight, the third straight Deduno start that he's been assigned.
"It's a good thing for Pinto, because Sammy's tough to catch. It's a good learning experience for him," Gardenhire said before the second game of a three-game series in AT&T Park, which is already about one-third full an hour before the 9 p.m. CDT first pitch. "They communicate well, so it's great experience for the kid. And they've worked well together, so you just kind of stick with it."
Deduno has posted two consecutive quality starts, and will go for a third in just his second career start in an NL park. (Deduno, who got a no decision last June in Washington, is 0-for-2 at the plate.)
"He's starting to get comfortable in the rotation. He's got his routine, throwing in between [starts], the whole package," Gardenhire said. "His first start was definitely a little rough, where he was misfiring a little bit, but he's been getting continuously better."
Here are the lineups that Deduno and Ryan Vogelsong will face tonight: